A CRUISE ship operated by luxury cruise line Silversea Cruises was involved in a head-on collision with a container vessel while en route to Ha Long Bay, Vietnam last Friday.
Reportedly sailing in conditions of reduced visibility due to thick fog, passengers on board the Silver Shadow were called to muster stations following the impact, but no evacuation maneuvers were executed in the end.
Passengers eyewitness accounts described severe damage to the container vessel – struck in the bridge, and with a large tear ripped in its side – as well as unconfirmed injuries to its crew.
The Silver Shadow emerged from the collision relatively unscathed, with a hole punctured in its bow. The ship is now docked in Hong Kong to undergo assessment of damage sustained.
In a press statement issued this morning, Silversea Cruises sought to downplay the incident:
“Silver Shadow was involved in a minor incident on March 16, 2012 at around 4:20 GMT as it was approaching the pilot station in Ha Long Bay, Vietnam. There was contact between Silver Shadow and a local commercial vessel. Silver Shadow incurred limited minor dents and guests’ safety was never compromised. The ship was fully operational and continued on its course to Ha Long Bay where all shore tours operated normally.”
“Silversea will carry out a full investigation into the incident.”
Built in 2000, the 28,258-tonne Silver Shadow can carry a maximum of 382 passengers. The ship is scheduled to depart March 28 on a seven-day itinerary starting and ending in Singapore.